Turtle, Ecuador

Your words, not ours

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Your Words - We tell it like it is! Holiday Reviews by previous Exodus travellers  

Here at Exodus we thrive on feedback from our customers. It's the only way we can ensure our trips continue to be the best they can be. So, for the real tales, twists and turns of the trip you're interested in, look no further than the reviews from our previous travellers.

Simply use the selector below to search our trip reviews and start reading real feedback from real Exodus travellers who have ‘been there and done that’!

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  • Reviewed August 2012
    Anonymous

    CYCLING VIETNAM

    A brilliant cycling adventure which combines moderately challenging cycling through ever-changing scenery with a real opportunity to experience the culture, history and people of Vietnam.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The penultimate day of cycling - 110km into Hue, including a 10km up-stretch through the mountains.  Off the bike, it would have to be cruising in Halong Bay, one of the numerous UNESCO World Heritage sites that we visited along the way.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Outstanding.  Lam is full of knowledge about his country, and a highly organised and competent tour leader.  Full of fun and energy, he led us brilliantly and is an excellent ambassador for Vietnam and Exodus.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Being comfortable whilst cycling is the key to maximum enjoyment.  Own saddle and padded shorts are for winners!  One of our group also brought cleats - a nice to have but not essential. 

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Bring a camera, charger and spare SD card - you will not be short of things to take photos of.
  • Reviewed August 2012
    Anonymous
    Trip:

    CYCLING CUBA

    This was a lovely trip but some things do need to be changed.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Dificult to pin point - the first day in Havana, Trinidad and going on the Catamaran, Santiago. The scenery was lovely, the people friendly.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Raimon(do) was fantastic - an excellent source of knowledge, good organisational skills, friendly approachable. All the drivers were fabulous.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Don't go in the summer if you can help it - it is very hot indeed.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I understand that this trip has only recently been added in August (probably due to high demand for us teachers!)  However, I do think that there should be a difference between the Winter and Summer itineraries.  I don't understand why we didn't start cycling until 8.30 or in some cases midday (!) whilst in India and Indochina we generally started at 7.00 or earlier.  The heat was really difficult.  Also, there were a lot of transfers.  Admittedly, we got a taste of the whole island, but I feel that much more time could have been spent in Havana, Trinidad and Santiago and some other places left out - alternatively, extend it by a few days.  This all sounds negative, but it was still a great experience and one that I would recommend - in Winter.  The hotels were fine, some very interesting colonial type buildings, the food nowhere near as bad as I was lead to believe and the mojitos were a must have!
  • Reviewed August 2012
    Anonymous

    CLASSIC THAILAND

    Wide range of places visited-leisurely in second half!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Several-hard to choose:Elephant riding in Chang Mai- Day at cookery school- Hotel by beach in Hua Hin!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    James was very obliging and has been a tour  leader for many years!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Limited free time to explore in first week-more leisurely thereafter!  Overnight train surprisingly pleasant -but it often arrives  five hours late if the engine is having an off day!!!  Cooperate over wearing life jackets- if you don't it wil just cause delay to whole group!Take lots of  insect repellant and cover legs and arms at night.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Hotels mostly excellent - good rooms and clean Visit Canal market on journey from Hua Hin,  Street massages cheap and Wonderful!
  • Reviewed August 2012
    Anonymous

    ELEPHANTS & LEOPARDS OF SRI LANKA

    Great safaris, amazing accommodation, food brilliantExciting sights on drives - elephants, leopards, birds and other animals

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Exciting sights on drives - elephants, leopards, birds and other animals

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Brilliant - knowledgeable, friendly helpful

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Organise your own flight Sri Lanka Airlines was sub-optimal

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Great holiday
  • Reviewed August 2012
    Anonymous

    MT TOUBKAL CLIMB

    Good value 7 day  trip -flights just over 3 hours. Good mix of Marrakesh and hiking.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Crossing  the top of the pass on third day- from campsite two the steep path  looked impossible.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Hassan had a good sense of humour, good communicator and excellent leaders. Fast walker!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Weather in July 45' C in Marrakesh and putting  socks and boots on hot feet  at 40'C an experience. Weather soon became plessant- just chilly for summit. Some short showers in afternoon.Walking was hard -sections of path at higher levels rough.  The 5 hour day and optional aclimitisation extra hike met varied abilities and needs. No  altitude sickness issues in our group.Make sure you use handwash- hand bowl washes not really promoted. Some tummy issues! No real washing facilities for first three nights- don't expect bowls at you tent or mugs of tea!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Unlike other EXodus trips some days  toilet facilities character building. Enjoyable butsome walking hard-especially  in the heat!
  • Reviewed August 2012
    Anonymous

    WALKING IN BOSNIA & HERZEGOVINA

     A fantastic trip in an amazing country! I really liked the combination of several days walking alongside the opportunity to take in some culture too (Sarajevo is an amazing city). Bosnia and Herzegovina is a really beautiful country and my advice would be to go now before it is spoiled by mass tourism. 

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I had lots of inspirational moments on this trip ranging from reaching the top of Maglic Mountain (Bosnia's highest peak), rafting down the Neretva river, spending time in Sarajevo or just relaxing with the group and a few beers! It was interesting and moving to learn about and see evidence from the recent Balkan war and hear our guides talk about their experiences during this time. 

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our group leaders, Alan and Emir, were great. Really well organised, happy to answer questions and make suggestions and their health and safety considerations were impeccable. They made a real effort to help the group bond together.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    You cannot obtain Bosnian Convertible Marks outside of Bosnia and Herzegovina. I took Euros and changed them at a bank when I arrived. I think it would have been easier just to take Marks from the cash point(s) on arrival. Useful to take some Croatian Kuna for use in Dubrovnik. I would like to have spent a few more days in Dubrovnik. It is worth considering adding a couple of days before or after the trip to see a bit more of this beautiful city.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I would really reccomend this trip to anyone who is considering it - book it now!
  • Reviewed August 2012
    Anonymous

    MANALI TO LEH RIDE

    One of the most amazing bikeable roads  in the world.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Not sure I'd hold with a trip being 'inspirational', but there were plenty of cycling moments that had some of us shouting with joy. The endless descent from Tanglang La on the most amazing virgin blacktop, the canyon descent at the end of the longest day, the half days when we could just lay on our  backs and watch the clouds dissolve.The crawl through the mud and traffic jams on Rohtang La was also extremely entertaining. The landscape is, by far, the most striking element of this ride, always changing and always spectacular.Even if you're not a sightseer, the working monasteries in Ladakh are pretty amazing, too.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Both group leaders were great guys and far better cyclists than any of us.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    You might want to think about joining the trip at Manali - you're more likely to get a bug on the two day overland transfer from Delhi than at any other time during the trip and Kullu/Bhuntar is only 90 minutes from Delhi by air.Also, Exodus use Jet Air for all flights and their policy on carrying bikes is confusing and inconsistently applied. Worst case is getting charged £150 each way to take your own bike. If you are travelling with your own bike, ask exodus to provide the full T & C's fpor the flight so you can make sure you can meet them (a well packed bike in a bike bag may well count as part of your luggage allowance, a boxed bike most definitely will not) or book your own flight.You will need a hardtail MTB with front suspension and XC tyres - I took rigid forks and really missed my suspension forks on the jeep track downhills.
  • Reviewed August 2012
    Anonymous

    WALKING IN TUSCANY (Grade C - Challenging Week)

    A really varied, exciting and spectacular trip.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Walking...well, scrambling/clinging/concentrating along the ridge to the summit on the third day's walk, really dramatic views (before the mists closed in) and tough!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Liz was fantastic...patient, excellent at providing the challenge needed (for an apparently very fit group) without letting anyone feel they couldn't keep up with the demands of this C grade week.  She also went over and above what you would expect in terms of helpful information and advice on the day off and the last day, ensuring we got to see Lucca and Pisa before flying home.  I also very much appreciated the suprisingly prolific snacks she managed to fit into her rucksack each day!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Make sure you are up to a challenging week...this isn't genteel strolling through Tuscan olive groves!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Just a brilliant walking week, unexpectedly rugged at times combined with a really great variety of terrain.  Elvis was an added bonus (you'll have to go to find out who and why!) Mama's cooking and the accomodation were both perfect.
  • Reviewed August 2012
    Anonymous

    THE INCA TRAIL

    Everything I had ever dreamed of and more

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing Machu Picchu itself, after a long and hard treak the group arrived at a ridge overlooking the ruins of Machu Picho.  One look and I got so emotional I started to cry, it was amazing and well worth hiking all that way to view.  The next day as you walk round this amazing city and learn about its history the feeling cannot be described in words.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Juan our group leader was excellent.  His knowledge was of the Incas and Peru was amazing.  He quickly made us all feel as ease.  There is no way I would have been able to complete the trip without his help and encouragement.  I had to take at it a very slow pace but Juan gave me the confidence to keep going.  He had a great sense of humour and it just felt as if he was part of the group.  I do not think the holiday would have been quite so memoriable without him as the leader of our group he made everyone feel welcome and as a result I feel we all bonded very well and had many laughs. 

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Try and get as fit as possible, apart from the altitude and high accents and decents you are often climbing up and down rough trails over large rocks.  There are no flat bit in Cuzco or on the trail so the fitter you are the better.  On saying that as long as you have good stamina you will manage.  Bring trousers that are easily washed out and will dry quickly.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This trip was a dream of mine for such a long time and I never thought it would come true, however my daughters surprised me with it as a gift for my 50th birthday.  I was pretty nervous as I had never travelled much let alone been on a group treking holiday.  On arriving in Cuzco itself I was met by a member of the Exodus team and from then on they looked after me very well.  I was quite nervous about the trail and was definately the slowest out of all the group.  Our group leader Jaun was excellent and after the first day told me to take my time which I did and I had a brilliant time.  Our group bonded together really well and we had such a laugh.  Each time I turned the corner and saw yet another hill I would let out a cry in my Scottish accent 'Oh feck not another hill' and this soon became a group joke.  Some advice when a guide tells you that you only have ten more min to arrive at camp or its just around the corner, do not believe them as  time and distance in Peru are different from everywhere else!!!  This also became a joke between our group as when anyone asked how longer we had to go they would be told ten mins or just around the corner to which they would ask is it a Peruivan corner or a normal one!  At the dinner table at night this became a standing joke.  This indeed for me was a holiday of a lifetime and a memory I will never forget.  I would highly recommend Exodus to anyone thinking of travelling as the trip was very well organised.  To the group leader and all my fellow trekers I thank them for making this an enjoyable, humourous and happy experience I will treasure for the rest of my days.
  • Reviewed August 2012
    Anonymous

    GREENLAND: SCORESBYSUND BY SCHOONER

    This was the trip of a lifetime.  Our home on the little wooden schooner was dwarfed by the stupendous panoramas of the sea, fjords, 2000metre ice capped mountains, many glaciers and massive icebergs. The views of this magical wilderness changed as we sailed hour by hour.  The boat was very seaworthy and safe and the crew were excellent and professional and at the same time were very welcoming and treated us as friends.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The first gobsmacking panorama viewed from the airstrip at Constable Point with the schooner anchored about 1km away.   Many stupendous views especially from a small rocky hill above the last anchorage before the return to Constable Point   Getting close to massive icebergs. There were many   Going ashore and seeing musk oxen   Watching a gyr falcon do noisy acrobatics against a backdrop of two huge glaciers coming from the icecap to meet the waters of the  fjord    The beautiful displays of wild flowers   A seal so close you could hear it breathe   Sailing without the motor amongst the icebergs    

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Remy was excellent. He was friendly and professional and spoke both english and french. He was very knowledgeable about the geology, geography and the flora and fauna.    The Captain of the  Hildur was also very professional and friendly as were all the crew

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Go with an open mind. The trip I was on had 11 passengers 1 french , 7 swiss. 1 british, 1 american, 1 french-canadian. The mix of people added much to the enjoyment of the trip. It was fun. The space on the boat appears limited at first but you soon get used to it. If you want space to yourself you can find somewhere to read a book or use your bunk. You are free to wander about most the boat and the crew were very happy to talk about all aspects of sailing and the area. Taking part in hoisting the sails etc was encouraged. The food was plentiful and very good with an excellent cook. But there were not much in the way of desserts except fruit. Take snickers or mars bars if you need those.  Beer, wine and schnapps were available. There was some rough weather on the second day after which it was very calm. The boat was very seaworthy and safe. Survival suits were worn sometimes, especially when using the zodiac and were good for keeping warm on deck if the breeze was cool. Take rubber soled walking boots for the land but you can also wear these on deck; also take softer shoes.  The weather was mostly dry with quite a lot of sun. Take sun cream and a hat with a brim.  I took a down duvet jacket but did not need it. There were virtually no flies or midges. Take plenty of camera memory ; the whole trip, boat and scenery , was very photogenic.Be prepared for a small wash basin that empities slowly. A shower was freely available but as the water desalination system was faulty and water was taken from streams on land (perfectly drinkable) we we asked to be a careful with water use but this was no problem.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    It should be made more clear that North Sailing will operate the trip and that their representative will meet you at Reykjavik domestic airport and organise a group travel to Constable Point. I had to be called by public address as I was not aware of this arrangement but it worked OK when I had found the rep. If you are part of the first group for the year you will have to carry your survival suit. This adds to your weight but because of the group travel it is OK if you are a bit over your individual limit. It is important know that the North sailing vouchers that were sent as an attachment must be taken as these are payment for the various services/transfers. If you do not have them you will have pay cash. Getting the bus from Keflavik to the hotel was not simple. I learned at the airport that I had to swap the travel voucher for a bus ticket then find the bus. It was raining and dark and the bus was in a poorly lit part of the car park 200metres from the airport terminal exit and not well signposted. You have to change from the airport bus to a minibus in central Reykjavik. The hotel Natura was good but allow at least 1h30min when travelling back to Keflavik as you are picked up by a mini bus and then have to transfer to the main airport bus in central Reykjavik.  
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